China will speed up the reform of prices of resources this year and the price of water will be raised, said Vice Minister of Water Resources Hu Siyi.
Hu indicated that efforts will be made to save agricultural water in the future, since 70 percent of China's water is used in farming. Agriculture uses water at a low-level of efficiency.
With food and water security becoming great concerns around the world, China will take measures to ensure agricultural water use and promote its plan to increase food production. Hu said that with international food prices recently increasing at an alarming rate, China promises to meet 95 percent of national food demand by itself, without imports, within 12 years.
He emphasized that the price of water will be raised in China along with adjustments to other resources. The national water supply now amounts to 579.5 billion cubic meters, and another 40 billion cubic meters will be added per year until 2010, said Hu. During the 2006-2010 period, China has been trying to resolve the problem of safe drinking water in 205 cities and 350 towns, some of which lack water while others have low water quality.
(China.org.cn by Wang Wei, August 14, 2008)